Our hope is in You.
Tho our faults are numerous,
In mercy, forgive.
As we look to you,
Unite us as your people
In wisdom and love.
Someone had whammed the guard rail! A sign had been put up “Damaged Guardrail.” When installed it was shiny, sturdy, and solid, but now it is messy, marred, and mangled. I wonder who hit the guard rail and why. Was it caused by an out of control car that had a blowout? Was it a mother who was passing goldfish to the toddler in a car-seat? Was it a tipsy driver who drove in spite of laws against drunk driving? Was it a new driver who had just taken a driver’s ed course and knew all the rules but lacked the experience? Or was it the fault of the guardrail itself, maybe it reflected the glare of the sun at just the wrong time? Or had the hail and rain been so blinding, the driver couldn’t see?
Seems like society’s guardrails work about the same way. Parents are charged with being “first responders,” in the guardrail brigade. So out come the plugs for electrical switches, fences, and car seats. Deut. 22:8 is apropos, “When you build a new house, make a parapet (rail) around your roof so that you may not bring the guilt of bloodshed on your house if someone falls from the roof.” But how far does that go, when a child deliberately jumps over the rail? How does the church work out as a guardrail? Love, fellowship, respect and fun is great. But when they start talking about discipline, holiness, and clean living – all that guardrails stuff – most studies show that more than half of the youth drop out when they age out. So what about the government? So here come the laws, surely they are good guardrails. Oh, yes, good if people obey them. But if they don’t (like in Prohibition, drugs, adultery, etc.) you do away with the law. No law, no law breakers, no guardrails. How are society’s guardrails looking? Weak and wobbly. One guardrail still stands—God’s word. Oh it is smashed, bashed, and trashed, but standing firm, steady and dependable. Prov. 18:10 “The name of the Lord is a strong tower, the righteous man runs into it and is safe”
I told you all last night in “Just Restin” that I’m in a coastin’ mood. So today I’m postin’ a selection from FB three years ago. Enjoy.
I had known Sammy most of a school year before I married him, so I guess I should not have been surprised to find a few little flaws in him after a few years of marriage. One of the most serious was that he would pull his tee-shirts off over his head and arms leaving them (the shirts, not the arms) turned inside out for the laundry. The laundry was no problem. I had caught on to the bit about having to wash clothes for the family. But turning those shirts right-side out! That bugged me for years. Finally I decided to quit fighting it; I took those shirts as an opportunity to pray and be thankful for him. So I did that – thinking out a sentence prayer of need and thankfulness each time I turned a shirt. That part of the experience didn’t last long. I guess the devil decided it wasn’t worth his time, God decided to move me on to more important things, or I successfully humbled myself to deal with the problem. I don’t know when I forgot the whole issue; however, I moved on. I find it kind of funny now that I notice I just fold them wrong-side out! He’s happy with that; I’m happy with that.
I gotta go, dear readers, Sammy is putting his laundry in the machine. “Sammy, there are only five socks there. That means one is under the sofa or left in a shoe, or somewhere. Look for it. Remember, even number for socks in laundry. Come on, darlin’, even number. Odd number means one is missing. You’re a math teacher, for goodness sake. Odd numbers, even numbers. Socks equals even number. Got it yet?”
I’ve had four days of deep, deep thinkin’
Posts of value, I’ve been linkin’
I’ve an urge to try out goofin’
Write a poem that takes no proofin’.
Just an easy laid back feelin’
Slow my brain down from it reelin’
See if I might get some giggles
And watch my stomach while it wiggles.
Allow my readers an excuse for yawns,
And a good night’s rest before day dawns.
Keep it short to show I’m coastin’
Doing absolutely nothing for which I’m boastin’.
When my sons were young, some people thought I was partial to one of them. The good thing was that some thought I was partial to the other. I took that as pretty good evidence that I was not partial! When I was pregnant the second time (with Roger), I remember thinking, “I want this child. I will be a good mother, but I will never love him like I love Carl.” It wasn’t true. I found that love multiplies rather than divides.
I’m saying this because I want to ask you a question? Does it seem to you like God loves you better than anybody else, or does it seem like God loves others better than you?
Let me suggest an experiment. If you passed a pepper shaker down a row of ten people and asked them to take a sniff, would number ten get less of a whiff than number one? What if a hundred people sniffed? Would the pepper be less potent for number one hundred?
Perhaps the pepper would appear to be more or less potent to some than others because of the “sniffer” not because of the pepper. You might see the effect on some people. Perhaps they sneeze or cough. The pepper was the same but some people took a bigger sniff.
So God is the pepper. We are the sniffers. God’s love does not change but the effect of his love may appear greater in some than in others. If you want more effect, sit close and take a big whiff.
I, too, have been there – in the secret place. Like Moses, I have been on the mountain top, hesitant to come down and take up the mundane duties of earthly living. Like Job, I was in the ash heap, but I came out saying, “I shut my mouth. I knew nothing before, but now I’ve seen Him! Now I know Him!” Like David, I’ve washed the altar with my tears and joyed in sins forgiven. Like Isaiah, I’ve seen Him high and lifted up. (Here I am, Lord, peeking over the earth’s rim, back here, behind the cherubim and seraphim I love you Lord.) Like John, I have leaned on His breast and dwelt there until His breath became my breath. Like Mary, I have sat at His feet, and, like Martha, I have served Him in the kitchen. I’ve been to places to wonderful to tell, beginning when, like the centurion,I stood at the cross and knew that, truly, there hung the Son of God.
“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalm 91:1
Pam: Enters room alone, muttering to self. “Where or where am I going to get money for my school books.”
God: Are you talking to me? I don’t see anyone else around.
Pam stutters, “Uh, Uh, oh, yes, I guess so.”
I’m glad to listen. Tell me about it.
Well, I have to have two books for my summer class.
You had $130 from birthday gifts. What happened to that?
But that money was just for me – you know – just presents for me. I bought new jeans. I know you expect me to look nice. That is a promise. You clothe the lilies of the field. So I know you don’t mind if I buy new jeans.
Oh, I’m happy for you to look nice. You look nice in the dress your mom bought, too. And the one your grandmother bought, the one from your summer job, and the three outfits your friend gave you because she couldn’t wear them anymore. In fact, all thirty-four of your outfits look good on you. But back to the money. Those jeans cost $68 so you must have $62 left. Can’t you buy books for that?
No, I bought tapes for my new stereo. They were $6 each. I bought two gospel tapes. They are a real blessing. They make me feel real spiritual and everything.
Yes, those tapes are uplifting. How about the third one you bought. Wasn’t it $8? I haven’t heard it around here.
I haven’t played it.
Why did you buy it?
It was just that I didn’t know how to get out of the spot I was in. I was down at the music store just sort of looking around when some cute guys came in and started talking to me. They were going on about how good that tape was and I thought they would be offended if I didn’t buy it.
So you were just being thoughtful of their feelings, huh?
Yes, but I haven’t played it because I didn’t think you would like it much.
Well, let’s see. You have about $42 dollars left, is that right? Won’t that buy two books if you get used ones.
Yeah, that’s about what used ones cost, but I don’t have $42. I took Jill and Karen out for pizza because it was Karen’s birthday.
Pizza for three. That wouldn’t be so much.
I also had to buy gas.
Thirteen for pizza and ten for gas?
And six for a parking ticket. I parked in a handicapped space.
That’s using the money pretty fast all right. That leaves $13. Would that buy one used book? Oh, no, that $13 was your tithes, wasn’t it? Looks like you need some more money. I’ll get right on it and see what I can do for you.
I didn’t pay my tithes. That $13 went for a second pizza. Those cute guys at the music store came into the pizza parlor. They were hungry and …..
Daily haiku, prompt “lavish” by Morgan
Her precious kindergarten face looked up at me in surprise, “It’s magic!” she said. At her teacher’s request I had taken her to my room for a bit of one on one teaching to help out with some math readiness.
The situation was this: I had four two inch blocks. I set them out on the table and asked her to count them, which she could do. “One, two, three, four.” Then I moved them together so they were touching each other.
“How many blocks now?” “One,” she said.
“No, sweetie, see there are four. Watch one, two, three, four,” as I separated them.
“How many?” “Four,” she would say.
“Right, now put them together. How many blocks?” “One,” she would answer.
After several times of doing basically the same thing, I put them together. Her little eyes lit up with delight, “It’s magic!” she said.
Not only do we sometimes not learn, but worse, we sometimes come up with the wrong answer. The smiles we must bring to God’s face, as he says, “My ways are not your ways, neither are my thoughts, your thoughts.” Then he tenderly says, “Let’s do it again.” Oh, the love and patience of our Heavenly Teacher.